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Banking

BRIEFCASE

April 28, 1995|Hope Hamashige, Times correspondent

Joint Efforts: The Findley Group bank consulting firm in Anaheim has joined forces with management consultant Axiom Inc. to try to cash in on the increased mergers and acquisitions in the banking industry.

"Different cultures and business structures make things different for the customers," said Colin Walsh, spokesman for Axiom in West Los Angeles. The most successful mergers, he said, are those that blend the businesses of two institutions in a way that preserves the culture to which its customers have become accustomed.

Edward Schmidt, co-director of Findley Group, called the working relationship "unique" because it combines his company's expertise in bank consulting and information services with Axiom's in management advice.

Despite consolidations, the banking industry remains competitive in California, Schmidt said. To succeed, financial institutions that merge need a game plan from the early days of the acquisition.

"How an institution performs during the first year after a restructuring often determines its ultimate fate," he said.

So far, the companies have not produced joint clients, but they said they are fielding dozens of inquiries.

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